[NAFEX] Carpenter bees as pollinators

Matt Demmon mdemmon at gmail.com
Mon Apr 26 12:30:51 EDT 2010

All I can say from long past holes found in our house, and present
holes in our barn, is that they love burrowing in oak timbers, which
are very hard when they are 100 years old. Haven't seen any sign of
damage in softer spruce/pine boards, but they might just like the
larger size of the old true 2x lumber.

z5 se MI

On Sun, Apr 25, 2010 at 10:07 PM, Douglas Woodard <dwoodard at becon.org> wrote:
> I wonder if carpenter bees would dig their holes preferentially in soft
> easily worked wood like basswood, blocks of which could be hung up in
> more or less sheltered spots exposed to the outside. Does anyone have
> any experience which would shed light on this?
> I'm thinking of an analogy with the sacrificial metals which are used on
> boats and ships for corrosion protection.
> Doug Woodard
> St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada
> Ginda Fisher wrote:
>> Begin forwarded message:
>>> *From: *Richard Harrison <rharrison922 at yahoo.com
>>> <mailto:rharrison922 at yahoo.com>>
>>> *Date: *April 25, 2010 8:13:03 PM EDT
>>> *To: *North American Fruit Explorers <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org
>>> <mailto:nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>>
>>> *Subject: **Re: [NAFEX] Carpenter bees as pollinators*
>>> *Reply-To: *North American Fruit Explorers <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org
>>> <mailto:nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>>
>>> Ginda,
>>>     But bumblebees can sting the %@#&* out of you!  I had one attack
>>> me on my lawn mower once and he "buzzed" on the back of my thumbnail.
>>> I could FEEL the heat of his stinger. That was terrifying. I don't
>>> find carpenter bees nearly as terrifying, personally.
>>> Richard
>> On Apr 25, 2010, at 9:15 PM, Jwlehman at aol.com <mailto:Jwlehman at aol.com>
>> wrote:
>>> In a message dated 4/25/2010 7:47:16 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
>>> list at ginda.us <mailto:list at ginda.us> writes:
>>>> They will dig holes in your house. You may not mind sacrificing one
>>>> board of trim to the bees, but lots of people would, and if you have
>>>> nests of them around, they might start a new nest and get into
>>>> structural wood.  (And even if that's not very likely, homeowners
>>>> will worry about it.)
>>> I've . . .  never been attacked or stung. NEVER. Actually they seem
>>> quite docile. In past years I've killed, by swatting, as many as 20 a
>>> day.
>>> But watch out for the little bumblebees that nest in hay and grass.
>>> Those are mean little SOBs and will sting if you just get close.
>> I didn't mean to say they are aggressive.  I have no idea if they are
>> aggressive.  They just look really scary - I spent an afternoon cooped
>> up inside a friend's house because the friend wouldn't go outside
>> because he was afraid the carpenter bees would sting someone.
>> I've had better luck with bumblebees than some of you.  I get bumblebees
>> working my raspberry blossoms while I pick the earlier berries, and we
>> work within inches of each other, and have never had a problem.  They
>> don't sting me, I don't hurt them.  AND, I've never had a friend so
>> frightened of bumblebees that I couldn't go outside.  Also, bumblebees
>> don't damage wood, so you can say "they are completely harmless if you
>> leave them alone" and it's true.  I couldn't make that argument to my
>> friends re the carpenter bees, because those bees had already done some
>> minor damage to the house.
>> Ginda
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-matt demmon

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